We have been asked, "how has your work evolved", many times throughout our careers. Despite our previous tome on politically correct artistic influence, the real answer is that all artists are guided on a daily basis by a wide variety of internal and external influences. This rarely results in a straight linear path in the evolution of the creative output.
This question of "evolution" is often confused with the artist's refinement of a particular technique.
The resulting answer usually amounts to, "I started painting squares and circles and I wasn't too good at it. Now I paint squares and circles with great precision."
In our case the "technique" is experimentation, collaboration and hybridization.
Here's the executive summary for those of you who are in a hurry: A long time ago we started experimenting and collaborating and creating work with a hybrid of materials and techniques. We weren't to good at it. Now we're much better at it.
We’ve been making jewelry as part of the output of our design studio since 1972. It was a very small part in those days. In 1989, we decided to focus the studio much more on jewelry. This shift was a reaction to the then growing art jewelry movement. All of a sudden jewelry design became the creative Wild West. Traditional concepts of jewelry and adornment were being challenged. Bold experimentation with materials and techniques was expected. This environment suited us just fine.
We came to this new movement well armed with over a decade of formal art training and a broad experience with a wide range of materials from the studio’s industrial design practice. The studio was also heavily involved with the mining, gem and mineral trade at the time. A significant part of our output was lapidary work with an emphasis on commesso (intarsia) techniques.
This jelly fish design was typical of the type of work the studio was producing in the late 1980s. We often worked with plant and sea life forms using a fair amount of custom cut gem material.
During the early 2000’s the studio output was both flamboyant and restrained. These dual paths served both our creative needs and the demands of the marketplace.
As we progressed, the work became bolder, and the polymer began to stand on its own as the main element of the work.
Blog Carnival is a monthly exercise by the members of the Association of International Metalsmiths.
Volunteer members post their own perspectives on a common theme, giving the reader a view into the minds and lives of how artists from around the world relate to the same topic.